Tamara Niquette Portfolio

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Mini Course: Integrating Technology in Mathematics

Statement of Intent

I plan to create a mini course for current and pre-service teachers at the K-12 grade levels with a focus on mathematics. The course will:

  • aim to inform teachers on the importance of integrating technology into the classrooms;
  • develop basic and advanced Microsoft Excel skills;
  • develop basic and advanced Geometer's Sketchpad skills; and
  • exploring how integrating technology can affect student motivation.

Preliminary Sources:

  • Cory, B., Manizade, A., Sharp, B., Steckroth, J., & Garofalo, J. (2004) A New Look at Geometer's Sketchpad: Teaching Area across Grade Levels. School Science and Mathematics, 104 (5), 233.
  • Garofalo, J., Juersivich, N., Steckroth, J., & Fraser, V. (2008) Teaching mathematics with technology: From teacher preparation to student learning. In G. Bull and L. Bell (Eds), Framing research on technology and student learning in the content areas: Implications for teacher educators. Information Age Press.
  • Knuth, E. J. (2002). Fostering mathematical curiosity. Mathematics Teacher, 95(2), 126-130.
  • http://www.dynamicgeometry.com/Instructor_Resources/Workshop_Guide.html
  • http://spreadsheets.about.com/od/excelformulas/ss/formula_begin.htm

Needs Assessment

Describe the Ideal

In an ideal educational system teachers would integrate many learning tools in each lesson. As science progresses many teachers have a difficult time keeping up with the technology. Many students have surpassed their teachers technological abilities and this course is designed to assist these teachers with keeping up with their students. The course will focus on Microsoft Excel and Geometer's Sketchpad (GSP) and how these technologies can be integrated into mathematics classrooms.

In this lesson teachers will aim to develop skills in designing lessons that use Excel and GSP. They will be provided with step-by-step tutorials and activities that allow exploration and trial-and-error. The lessons will also focus on providing teachers with information on why integrating technology into their classroom is important and how it may improve their students' motivation to learn.

Topics to be covered

  • The importance of technology use in the mathematics classroom
  • How to use Microsoft Excel and Geometer's Sketchpad
  • How to design activities that allow students to explore using these programs

The Instructional Problem

How can technology improve mathematics learning and student motivation?

About the Learners

The learners for this course will be mainly K-12 mathematics teachers. The teachers must have an interest in increasing student motivation as well as integrating technology into their classrooms. Furthermore, a basic knowledge of Microsoft Excel and Geometer's Sketchpad will be useful but are not necessary. These learners must be motivated to learn as many of the activities throughout the course will require self-exploration and "trial-and-error" within the program. It is also important that the learners have a basic knowledge of mathematics as it will be the basis of many lessons.

Possible Misconceptions

  • It may be difficult for some teachers to find free or trial versions of the programs if they are not available at their schools or if they do not own.
  • Users who may have used these programs may feel that their abilities are limited and give up on the course too quickly.
  • Users may feel that the lessons and the technology tools may only be valuable to mathematics teachers. Though the focus will be on mathematics these tools can be used in other subject areas.

Performance Objectives

Upon Completion of this course learners will be able to:

  • [Situation] Given a step-by-step guide, [LCV] generates [object] programs [action] using Geometer's Sketchpad or Microsoft Excel.
  • [Situation] Given the question, "How can technology be integrated into the classroom?" [LCV] states [object] a list of reasons they have pulled from [action] reading articles.

Task Analysis

Essential Prerequisites

  • Understanding of how to open a program and open a new or existing file
  • Basic understanding of geometrical and algebraic concepts
  • Ability to navigate through a course individually without constant guidance
  • Ability to follow step-by-step directions

Supportive Prerequisites

  • Previous use of Microsoft Excel and/or Geometer's Sketchpad
  • Positive attitude towards technology

Course Outline


Unit 1: Why integrate technology into the mathematics classroom?

Unit 2: Introduction to Geometer's Sketchpad (GSP)

Unit 3: Mathematical proofs & exploration in GSP

Unit 4: Introduction to Microsoft Excel

Unit 5: Mathematical exploration in Excel

Unit 6: Summary

Curriculum Map